Tak mi taky dorazil, všem organizátorům děkuji.
- Chronomag fórum
- → Vit Obsah
Bylo nalezeno 1000 položek, od uživatele Vit (Vyhledávání omezeno od 12-březen 17)
Crafter Rubber B Everest Vanguard
The Black Bay by Tudor is a collection of heritage-inspired dive watches with their Pelagos range covering the modern interpretation of a dive watch. Staying close to that heritage, the Black Bay is only available on distressed leather straps, riveted bracelets or fabric straps. Tudor do supply rubber straps that fit the end links of the Pelagos’ titanium bracelet, but the Black Bay does not have an OEM rubber option. That’s left a niche in the market for third party manufacturers to thrive and develop rubber straps bespoke for the Tudor Black Bay’s lug and case design.
Below are 4 examples for comparison in ascending price brackets. For the purposes of this review, only rubber straps with fitting, curved ends will be tested. The 22mm lug width of the Black Bay allows multiple straps to be connected but due to the position of the lug holes, low down and farthest from the case, the non-bespoke straps leave a large, open gap. This is not just unsightly but also can be uncomfortable as it exposes the sharp edges on the underside of the lugs.
Many thanks to Ben Rexworthy of WristworthyUK for loaning the straps for this review. Ben did a great write-up, which you can read here including different watches on rubber straps. For this review, only one watch will be tested with the straps, my personal Tudor Black Bay 41mm, with a rotating black bezel and manufacture movement.
Where possible, the majority of these straps for review have a universal ‘one-size-fits-all’ length. However, at certain points of the review, the length of strap is mentioned as either positive or negative. My wrists are 18cm, which is fairly average but your wear experience may differ. Also, prices are quoted in US Dollars as that is the largest market for these straps and therefore would benefit the majority of the audience, but global shipping is available from all vendors.
Without further ado, here are the 4 options:
Crafter Blue Diver Straps – $65.00
Kicking this off with the cheapest option is a Hong Kong-based company, Crafter Blue. Whilst mass-produced East Asian goods are a bit of a cliché, Crafter Blue are dive product specialists focussing solely on 2 brands, Seiko and Tudor. And even then, their rubber straps are only for the dive watch collections. The strap for review has a black outer coating and red inner lining, blending well with the red lume triangle on the bezel. Although, the red lining is still discreet whilst on the wrist.
Fitting the strap was a bit arduous, as the end curves that sit flush to the case have resistance when being pushed against the case. This means that it takes some force to connect the spring bars with the lug holes. However, this wasn’t the most difficult to attach on this list…keep reading. Once fitted, a tang buckle secures it well to the wrist but I did find the wide, angular tang doesn’t slot smoothly into the strap hole. This makes the act of putting it on and taking it off more hassle than it needs to be. The metal keeper is a nice touch but the ‘PROFESSIONAL’ text is superfluous and is not in keeping with the heritage nature of the Black Bay.
Crafter Blue metal keeper. Vanguard and Everest both have dual rubber keepers
The strap length was quite excessive and wrapped around near to the top of the watch case adding bulk. But I was pleased with the overall feel of the strap and was also glad that lint attraction was not an issue. You’ll see this was not an issue with the other straps, but I’ve seen even manufacture supplied rubber straps attract dust and fluff.
Vanguard Speciality Straps – $130.00
Moving on to a relative newcomer to fitted rubber straps is Dubai-based Vanguard. Again, there is a core focus on popular sports watch models, but the increased variety of colours and combos offers more freedom of choice.
At double the price of Crafter Blue, I still found issues with fitting the strap and nearly threw in the towel at some points. The problem is the steeply sloped lugs of the Black Bay that require equally sloped strap ends, which makes it an awkward shape on the underside. The spring bars are shrouded in thick rubber making it difficult to angle pliers to line up each lug hole simultaneously. Instead, I used a Bergeon spring bar tool, which offered more manoeuvrability but left the underside of the lugs exposed to scratches.
Crafter Blue, Everest and Vanguard
Once attached, the awkward shape is paid off with a seamless fit that angles towards the wrist. The snug fit is comfortable and the unique buckle differentiates itself from the typical square buckle. I also like the subtle fade from the centre section that gradually merges into a single flat surface. Minor gripe was the strap holes that were not angled and therefore could be seen stretching when the strap was worn tight. This could be especially prevalent if the strap is worn over a wetsuit sleeve. Overall, the fit was great but the act of fitting the Vanguard strap was enough to put me off from including it within my regular strap rotation. The underside of my lugs have suffered enough!
Everest Watch Bands – $230.00
Going up another price level and you can certainly feel the difference in quality of the rubber especially when it comes to the next 2 suppliers from Switzerland.
Everest’s rubber selection has a more premium feel to it. Not only the softness of the rubber but the way it has been moulded. Clean crisp lines are seen throughout with nice and thoughtful design flourishes. This was by far the easiest strap to affix. Each length of strap has a variance of the thickness of the rubber, which determines the rigidity and pliability of the Everest strap.
The curved ends were reassuringly firm whilst the buckle felt flexible for everyday comfort. The trade-off for having a higher density of rubber at the ends is that the straps tend to bow outwards from the case. It looks OK when looking top down but from the side it is quite pronounced. It could be viewed as offering more breathing space for your wrist, but in my experience, it put more pressure on the underside of my wrist where the buckle attaches.
The strap ends bow outwards on the Everest strap
The buckle is fantastic though. A chunk of steel that is well machined and is complimented with angled strap holes that the tang effortlessly slips in. This attention to detail helps getting the watch off and on massively improving the wearing experience day-in, day-out.
RubberB Rubber Straps – $250.00
Last but not least is the oldest player in the game. RubberB have been making rubber straps for Rolex for a while now and have ventured into similarly sporty watch brands over time. They are even affiliated with high-end, contemporary watch-maker, Roger Dubuis. With such pedigree, I had high expectations for the quality, and I wasn’t disappointed. RubberB is different feel to the rubber than the previous strap manufacturers mentioned above. The outer surface has a matte texture that feels slick to the touch, reducing the friction against other fabrics when sliding under a jacket cuff.
This particular version has the ability to be fitted with the Tudor designed deployant buckle as well as any normal tang buckle. You’ll need to have the fold-over buckle from Tudor though, so if you have the Black Bay distressed leather, it’s worth switching the buckle over to the RubberB for a secure deployant clasp. Once fitted, I found the surplus strap length a little excessive. I’m no John Cena but I’m also no pipe cleaner, and even I found the excess strap was catching on jacket sleeves and even belt loops as I was walking along. The only option available is a universal fit from RubberB but again, your wear experience may differ. The dual rubber keepers did well to hold in place, however.
The outer surface has a matte texture that feels slick to the touch, reducing the friction against other fabrics when sliding under a jacket cuff.
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